Maria Susana Garcia-Robles is the Chief Investment Officer at IDB Lab (formerly MIF). A recognized expert on development finance innovation, she assumed the leadership of all IDB Lab financial operations as of September 1st, 2017. She is responsible for overseeing a portfolio of $ 40 MM+ in new approvals every year in loans, direct equity operations, equity investments in venture capital (VC) and venture debt funds, social impact bonds and new blended finance instruments for social innovation.
Prior to this position, she served as Advisor to the IDB Lab General Manager on Innovation, Strategy and Client Relationships, while keeping her prior position as Team Leader in charge of VC Funds. Since August 2016, she also serves as IDB Lab Gender Initiatives Coordinator.
Starting in 1999 when she joined the IDB Lab/MIF, Mrs. Garcia-Robles has built the Lab’s seed/VC investment program as well as its high impact entrepreneurship, angel investment, and women economic empowerment strategies. She is frequently invited to speak at industry events and has written extensively on these topics. She is a co-founder of the Argentinean VC Association/ARCAP and the Colombian VC/PE Association ColCapital, a member of the LAVCA VC Group, a member of the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association Council of Development Finance Institutions, and Advisory Board member of the Argentinean and Brazilian VC Associations, ARCAP and ABVCAP. In 2012, she co-founded WeXchange, the first pitch competition and platform of encounter between LAC women entrepreneurs, mentors, and investors. In 2016, she co-founded the Impact Investment Task Force for Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay.
During 1993-1998, she worked as Consultant for U.S. foreign policy and United Nations issues for various governments and civil society organizations: Argentina, Chile, Guatemala, Honduras, México, Nicaragua, Spain, and the U.S; served as Delegate to the main UN Conferences during 1994-1999 dealing with population and development, human settlements/HABITAT, women, and social development.
Prior to 1993, she worked on the design of social and service programs for disadvantaged youth and women in New York City, New Jersey, Washington D.C., Atlanta, and Mexico.
Ms. Garcia-Robles has a Master’s Degree in International Economic Policy from Columbia University and a Master’s in Philosophy and Education from the Catholic University of Argentina.